Claimant to Syedna title, Khuzaima Qutbuddin dies in US

Khuzaima Qutbuddin, the claimant to the title of 53rd Dai al-Mutlaq of the Dawoodi Bohra community, has passed away in the US, a community official said here late on Thursday.

The self-proclaimed 'Syedna' Khuzaima Qutbuddin was 75 and had been ailing since some time and was said to be in California. More details were awaited.

He was the half-brother of the late Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin, the 1.20 million strong community's spiritual head, who passed away here on January 17, 2014.

Qutbuddin was subsequently embroiled in a bitter legal battle of succession after his nephew, Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin also claimed that his father, the late Syedna, had declared his anointed successor.

After several hearing in the past couple of years, the matter was scheduled to come up for critical hearings before Bombay High Court on April 22 and May 2.

The controversy over the successor had created confusion and a vertical schism in the miniscule but prosperous and peaceful community spread globally.

While Saifuddin is based here and functions from the Saifee Mahal at Malabar Hill, his uncle and rival claimant, Qutbuddin operated from Yeoor Hills in Thane, adjacent to the city.

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